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Indiana girls’ toughest years in middle school, study says

Study finds Indiana girls' toughest years are in middle school.

Posted on Sept. 19, 2013 at 1:00 a.m. | Updated on Sept. 19, 2013 at 2:39 p.m.

INDIANAPOLIS — A new report billed as the first comprehensive assessment of the well-being of Indiana girls is shedding light on the tough years Hoosier girls face starting in middle school.

The report released Thursday, Sept. 19, by researchers at St. Mary’s College, a Roman Catholic women’s college in South Bend, focuses on Indiana girls ages 10 to 19.

Among its findings are that many girls face growing feelings of sadness and hopelessness as they enter middle school. That peaks in the ninth grade, when about a third of them reported those feelings of despair. About a fifth of eighth-grade girls reported having suicidal thoughts.

Indiana Commission for Women Executive Director Kristin Garvey says the findings could help pinpoint when girls need intervention during the sometimes turbulent middle school and high school years.


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